As Chinese President Hu traveled to Washington, Taiwan tested missiles
The test, which revealed problems with several missiles, is considered a warning to China and a signal to the US that Taiwan still needs military assistance.
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"I'm not satisfied with the results," Ma told reporters after the missile drills. "I hope the military will find out the reasons and improve its training."Skip to next paragraph
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"[The failed missiles] may be tested again during another drill to be held in the second half of this year, but no final decision has been made," the official told AFP on condition of anonymity.
Taiwan has been independently ruled since 1949, but China continues to claim the island as part of its territory and has not renounced the use of force to achieve unification.
China’s successful test of the J-20 stealth fighter jet last week fueled fears in Taipei that China could turn its guns toward Taiwan.
“The Chinese J-20 stealth fighter is meant to be used as a first-strike force against Taiwan,” York Chen, an associate professor at the Graduate Institute of International Affairs and Strategic Studies at Tamkang University told the Taipei Times. “Japan is not its target, nor is Guam.”
Taiwan would like the US to sell it 66 F-16 jet fighters, which it hopes might serve to deter any air threats from China. Strong Chinese opposition to the sale of weapons to Taiwan, however, has kept Washington from making any commitments to the jet sale. Hu’s trip to the US this week added to Taiwanese concerns that Beijing will prevent future arms sales.
“The Taiwan government may be using this exercise to send a message to the US that its air defense is facing mounting pressure as China continues to develop the new generation of fighter jets,” defense expert Wang Kao-cheng of Taipei's Tamkang University told the Associated Press.
IN PICTURES: China's military muscle